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Anchorage closing in on AUD130m David Jones deal

Anchorage Capital Partners is closing in on a deal to acquire Australian department store chain David Jones for up to AUD130 million, with chief executive Scott Fyfe expected to remain as head of the business post-acquisition, according to a report by the Financial Review.

Key executives including Woolworths Holdings Ltd boss Roy Bagattini reportedly flew to Australia over the weekend and left on Monday having approved a sale of the business in a transaction estimated to be worth between AUD120 million and AUD130 million.

South Africa-based Woolworths paid AUD2.1 billion for David Jones in 2014 and has since made over AUD1 billion in writedowns and sold the vast majority of its property portfolio to repay debts. The last remaining significant property asset is the David Jones Bourke Street store in Melbourne, which is valued at about $250 million and will be leased back to David Jones on a long-term lease as part of the proposed deal.

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